Our objective is to account for the transitions in urban form and personal transportation in Copenhagen since 1947. Sustainability objectives are currently framed as efforts to reduce CO2 emissions. Urban transportation is a key area of intervention. In public debates, political parties, experts, and citizens make assertions about what is possible by referring to past experiences. Our contribution is to explore the official histories of Copenhagen in order to account for the transitions in mobility during the last six decades. We make a critical application of the multilevel perspective (MLP), which is the most used theory to study transitions. Our application is critical because the context of urban mobility necessarily includes a discussion of urban form development; therefore, we suggest ways in which the MLP should be adjusted in order to account for the historical dynamics evidenced in the empirical material collected for this study.
Andrés Felipe Valderrama Pineda and Nina Vogel
This article considers recent scholarship on the social dimensions of mass transit in the United States. It focuses on historical struggles to make urban conveyances serve the public and demonstrates that access to mass transit has been continually contested through legal challenges, economic boycotts, and everyday practice.
A Case Study of Malmö
Vanessa Stjernborg, Mekonnen Tesfahuney, and Anders Wretstrand
This study focuses on Seved, a segregated and socioeconomically “poor” neighborhood in the city of Malmö in Sweden. It has attracted wide media coverage, a possible consequence of which is its increased stigmatization. The wide disparity between perceived or imagined fear and the actual incidence of, or exposure to, violence attests to the important role of the media in shaping mental maps and place images. Critical discourse analysis of daily newspaper articles shows that Seved is predominantly construed as unruly and a place of lawlessness. Mobility comprises an important aspect of the stigmatization of places, the politics of fear, and discourses of the “other.” In turn, place stigmatization, discourses of the other, and the politics of fear directly and indirectly affect mobility strategies of individuals and groups.
Emma Terama, Juha Peltomaa, Catarina Rolim, and Patrícia Baptista
speeding up the mobility transition, we will need to reconcile and enhance the collective transport and personal mobility axes of urban mobility. Giorgio Ambrosino and colleagues 4 propose as a solution enhancing integrated and Patricia Baptista and “open
M. Maksudur Rahman and Md. Assadekjaman
Rickshaw pullers are key to sustaining urban mobility in Dhaka city. Yet they are among the most marginalized members of society. Pullers live in precarious urban environments and struggle to rise out of a chronic poverty trap. In their work they face the daily challenges of restrictions on their activities, harassment from passengers and the traffic police, traffic jams and accidents. This article explores the factors which contribute to the unsustainable lifestyles of rickshaw pullers in Dhaka city. It suggests that rickshaw pullers might be supported better through licenses, economic incentives, and by prioritizing their contribution to improving Dhaka's traffic system.
Dhan Zunino Singh
Considering ‘urban mobility as an important everyday life practice that produces meaning and culture,’ the present review discusses underground railway history in cultural terms. Following Colin Divall and George Revill, culture is understood here as representations and practices, and the underground railway ‘as mediation between the imaginable and the material.’ This review does not cover the prolific literature about this topic, but gathers perspectives from within and beyond transport or mobility history to contribute to a historical and comparative assessment of spatial representations and practices related to the production and uses of this subterranean mode of transport. The sources of these perspectives are Benson Bobrick’s Labyrinths of Iron, Rosalind Williams’s Notes on the Underground, Michael Brooks’s Subway City, David Pike’s Subterranean Cities, and Andrew Jenks’s A Metro of the Mount.
Andra B. Chastain
Nearly three decades ago, a French-trained urban planner remarked that “getting around any Latin American city is a true quotidian feat” for travelers contending with “the subways of Caracas, the packed lines of the Mexico metro, the Santiago journeys without any foreseeable destination, the crammed La Paz truffis [cars with fixed routes], the dangerous Lima micro[buses], and the ups-and-downs of central Quito.” While this description evokes the colorful spectrum of urban mobility in the region, it also sums up the anxieties of many postwar observers of Latin American cities: urban transportation seemed to be in crisis. With vehicle shortages, traffic congestion, air pollution, and sporadic social protests, public transportation tested Latin American metropolises since at least the postwar era.
More than any other recent urban film, Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Biutiful (MX/ES 2010) proposes a poignant commentary on the present conditions of a multi-ethnic yet racially segregated city, which is organized by different levels of mobility. Rather than being a tragedy, tracing the last months of Uxbal, a man who, in the face of his impending death, struggles to ensure a sheltered life for his two children, Biutiful can be conceived as a cinematic critique of the city. It offers a distinct contribution to the discourse on urban mobility, since it meticulously deciphers the urban conditions of an emerging new mobility spurred by a permanent quest for adaptability: a complex, contradictory mobility I would like to call a “forced flexible mobility.” In highlighting both the unequal distribution of space and its constant re-appropriation by different ethnic and social groups, this mobility tackles the contradictory status of a “flexible human being” forced into continuous transformation.
Robert C. Post, Urban Mass Transit: The Life Story of a Technology Zachary M. Schrag
Joel Wolfe, Autos and Progress: The Brazilian Search for Modernity J. Brian Freeman
Georgine Clarsen, Eat My Dust: Early Women Motorists Liz Millward
Virginia Scharff and Carolyn Brucken, Home Lands: How Women Made the West Margaret Walsh
Jeffrey W. Alexander, Japan’s Motorcycle Wars: An Industry History Steven L. Thompson
Lewis H. Siegelbaum, Cars for Comrades: The Life of the Soviet Automobile Valentina Fava
Per Lundin, Bilsamhället: Ideologi, expertis och regelskapande i efterkrigstidens Sverige Bård Toldnes
Ruud Filarski and Gijs Mom, Van transport naar mobiliteit: De Transportrevolutie, 1800–1900 and Van transport naar mobiliteit: De Mobiliteitsexplosie, 1895–2005 Donald Weber
William J. Mitchell, Christoper E. Borroni-Bird, and Lawrence D. Burns, Reinventing the Automobile: Personal Urban Mobility for the 21st Century Joe Schultz
Randal O’Toole, Gridlock: Why We’re Stuck in Traffic and What to Do About It Bob Post
Edna Bonacich and Jake B. Wilson, Getting the Goods: Ports, Labor, and the Logistics Revolution Vaclav Smil
Ian Carter, British Railway Enthusiasm Stephen Cutcliffe
Bicycle Lanes in Urban Europe, 1900-1995
Ruth Oldenziel and Adri Albert de la Bruhèze
Today most cities emphasize the construction of separate bicycle lanes as a sure path toward sustainable urban mobility. Historical evidence shows a singular focus on building bicycle lanes without embedding them into a broader bicycle culture and politics is far too narrow. Bicycle lanes were never neutral, but contested from the start. Based on comparative research of cycling history covering nine European cities in four countries, the article shows the crucial role representations of bicycles play in policymakers' and experts' planning for the future. In debating the regulation of urban traffic flows, urban-planning professionals projected separate lanes to control rather than to facilitate working- class, mass-scale bicycling. Significantly, cycling organizations opposed the lanes, while experts like traffic engineers and urban planners framed automobility as the inevitable modern future. Only by the 1970s did bicycle lanes enter the debate as safe and sustainable solutions when grass-roots cyclists' activists campaigned for them. The up and downs of bicycle lanes show the importance of encouraging everyday utility cycling by involving diverse social groups.